How Do You Choose Between Treatment at Home vs a Psychiatric Hospital?

During the earlier times of civilisation, those with mental illnesses lived at home and were treated at home, because there was nowhere else for them to go. Some were just blatantly victimised, blamed for being evil, evicted from their homes, and even persecuted. Later, as our understanding of mental conditions improved and they became better understood, facilities were built where they could be taken care of by properly trained staff, and to get away from the neglect at home.

Over the last few decades, it has, however, become glaringly obvious that in some mental institutions, people were still very much neglected and their needs were not seen to, which led to a lot of institutions being closed and ill persons sent back to be taken care of by the community again. The fact is that the neglect does not come from irregular housing arrangements, but rather by the lack of proper treatment.

Luckily, there are now very advanced, nurturing care and recovery facilities, and where patients cannot recover at home, they are better off being treated on a full-time basis in a psychiatric hospital for a period of time. It is often hard to tell whether a patient is better off at home or at a treatment facility, but there are some things that can be taken into consideration when trying to make this decision.

When to Choose a Psychiatric Hospital

  1. Potential for self-harm: If the person shows potential for self-harm or suicide, they should be hospitalised as soon as possible. Professional treatment is necessary in these cases, and often people at home are not able to provide the help or support needed. Close observation is needed and progress must be constantly checked by medical and psychiatric professionals.
  1. Possible injury or violence: If the person shows the potential to injure others, do damage to property or show a high tendency for violence, it is best for them to be hospitalised for their own benefit, and for the benefit of others that may suffer as a result, especially if the person is a threat to the people they live with, such as the spouse or children.
  1. How aware the person is of their illness: If someone is not aware that they are sick, they should be hospitalised, and if they have been treated before and not cooperated by taking medication, or have worsened despite the treatment, hospitalisation in a psychiatric hospital is also recommended. Substance abuse can be a great problem, and often people need to be hospitalised just to keep them away from these substances, and to monitor their physical and mental recovery, while detoxing or withdrawing from these substances.
  1. Physical requirements: Sometimes, a person needs to be on a special diet plan, or partake in therapy or physical recovery programmes that can only be provided by a hospital. Often, a physical disorder is the cause or a result of a mental illness, and in these cases, a good psychiatric facility is needed.
  1. Measure the merits: Compare hospitalisation with home care for this particular person and measure up the pros and cons. If it is clear that hospitalisation will produce better results (for everyone involved), the person should be hospitalised. It can place a huge burden on a family to take care of an ill person, and often the person who is sick doesn???t want to be looked after by family in the first place.

At our psychiatric hospital at Hartbeespoort, we now provide facilities for residential treatment. Here we provide the ideal environment in which to receive all the therapy, medical attention and other assistance that is needed to aid recovery. Our highly successful psychiatric therapy programme includes medical assistance, occupational therapy, recreational therapy, group therapy, and one-on-one counselling by highly qualified therapists.

If you are in need of advice about hospitalisation or home care for yourself, a relative or a friend, give our team a call and have a chat to us. We will be able to advise you on how to go about hospitalisation, and we can explain the benefits of our residential recovery programmes with you, and help you to make the best choice.